While we were sitting at Earth Day last week, reports were streaming in on the fall-out happening over on the Gulf Coast. The front which threatened our day in Central Florida cleared the coast first and dropped tons of birds behind it. That lasted for a few days. We hoped the trend would hold for a while but but Friday the winds shifted from North to South. Migrants had a clear shot back home before our weekend. It showed.
We had fewer birds than hoped. We are getting into the local groove, though. Our first bird we captured was a very juvenile Northern Cardinal which we neglected to get a photo of. Next up was a Gray Catbird, probably one of the last for the year, and then a recaptured Carolina Wren.
Things quickly turned quiet except for a flock of Cedar Waxwings that finally found one of the Florida Cherry trees near the banding table.
Just like last year, this seems to be the last filling station before this species finally heads North.
Not much was even moving near the lake. Mainly a few Gallinules and a resting Anhinga.
We almost had a Red-winged Blackbird but it escaped before we reached the net. They teased all morning. In fact, this bird is actually less than 4 feet from Net 21 and soon flew right over it to settle in the willows.
We did manage a little more color during the morning when we captured a male Northern Parula.
Parulas pretty much rule the tree tops right now, in fact since nearly two months ago, and their chicks are out and begging for food all over. Nice the see another up close.
Winds are still going to be from the East then South so it is going to be warm, even for this time of year. Time will tell if we ring out a few more migrants before they are all gone for the season.
Next (planned) Banding Day: Sunday, May 6th.
All nets will be opened by 6:10 A.M.